Our Cold-Hardy Palm-Like Cycad that’s native to Georgia, tolerates short periods of 15°F, thrives with basic care, and an attractive and hardy fit for smaller spaces.
Why Choose a Coontie Palm?
Do you have the feeling your local environment is too cold to design a tropical landscape? Put that feeling aside because Coontie Palms withstand cold winters and add an instant tropical appeal to landscapes generally too cold for standard palm trees. They can take the freezing temperatures without skipping a beat.
Although Coontie Palms resemble a low-growing palm, this native cycad makes a handsome addition to your landscape with its feathery and fern-like green foliage. The stiff and glossy leathery leaves grow out from an underground caudex and obtain a mature length of around 3 feet. Each leaflet is 3 to 6 inches long. The branches and leaf arrangement form a spiral coming out of the plant’s center.
The cycad is the perfect addition for smaller spaces, as it works well used as a groundcover or even an accent plant. Mature plants average around 2 to 4 feet tall and with a spread of around 3 to 5 feet.
Plants are either male or female. Males produce slender pollen-filled cones that are brown and 3 to 7 inches tall forming from the plant’s center. Female plants produce thicker brown cones ranging around 6 inches tall and covered in velvety fuzz. The female cones then break open revealing a wealth of orange seeds.
With its cold-hardiness, multiple landscapes uses adding an instant tropical appeal, you won’t be disappointed with the addition of a Coontie Palm to your garden.
Is it Cold-Hardy in My Area?
Coontie Palms don’t require the constant warmth of a subtropical climate to thrive. They grow well planted outdoors in USDA hardiness zones 8 through 11. This makes them hardy and gorgeous additions to landscapes that receive regular visits from Old Man Winter bearing his gifts of freezing temperatures.
These ancient cycads tolerate winter lows of 20°F and can even withstand short bursts of 15°F. Of course, if you’re expecting a blast of extremely cold weather there are some things you can do to protect your Coontie and make sure it survives relatively unscathed.
Saturating the root system with water the day before cold weather arrives and adding a thick layer of organic mulch around it will insulate the root system helping keep it warm.
You can also cover the Coontie Palm with a sheet. Stringing holiday lights throughout the canopy also keeps it warm and also adds some lighted interest to the area at night.
How Big Does It Get?
Although this slow-grower is small in size it’s big on good looks. Mature Coontie Palms grow to around 2 to 4 feet tall and 3 to 5 feet wide. This makes them good additions to smaller spaces, used as groundcovers or to line a border or walkway.
How Much Sun Does It Require?
Coontie Palms tolerate growing in a variety of light conditions. It thrives planted in full sun to shade. This adds to their ability to produce healthy and attractive growth used in a variety of landscape locations.
What About Soil and Water?
Once established, Coontie Palms are tolerant to drought and don’t require much water to thrive. However, newly planted cycads should be watered a couple of times weekly for the first couple of months while the root system establishes itself. Thereafter, you can cut back water to every week to two weeks, depending on your local weather conditions.
Although it tolerates growing in various well-drained soils, those that are slightly fertile produce the best growth. If your soil is less than ideal you can amend the area with well-rotted manure or compost before you plant.
Is It Easy to Maintain?
Coontie Palms maintenance needs are relatively low. You can trim off any dead leaf-filled branches anytime throughout the year. If you notice scale insects on the foliage you can use an insecticidal soap or horticultural oil to kill them. However, insects aren’t usually a problem.
What About Fertilizing?
Coontie Palms aren’t big feeders but fertilizing with an all-purpose ammoniacal nitrogen fertilizer applied in spring and late summer is sufficient. Always follow label instructions when it comes to amounts. Water in well after applying and be sure to wash any of the product off the foliage so it doesn’t cause burning.
Q: Do you deliver?
A: Yes, we deliver within a 30 mile radius of our Alpharetta, GA location. Click here to check your zip code. The cost for delivery is $65. For potential delivery beyond 30 miles, please call us at 770-400-9897.
Q: Do you install?
A: Yes, all the plants we sell can be installed by us. Installation cost varies by product. Once you place your products in the cart, it will display delivery and installation costs. We only install AtlantaPalms.com palm trees and plants. Installation requires delivery by us.
Q: Do you offer a warranty?
A: Yes, we guarantee that your palm tree will arrive in perfect condition. If you're not satisfied within the first five (5) days of receiving your trees and plants, give us a call at 770-400-9897 so that we can make things right.
If you have issues with your trees or plants within the first 30 days, give us a call. We will review your concerns and provide you with a one-time replacement if necessary. Replacement delivery and installation costs are at the customer’s expense.
Please note, palm trees need proper care. If you have provided less than optimal care, your purchase isn't covered by our guarantee.
Q: Do you accept returns?
A: Only palms and plants 15 Gallon or less can be returned. The plant must be returned within 2 days of pickup or delivery and must be in the original container. Once a tree has been removed from its original container, or has been planted, it cannot be returned. Delivery fees are non-refundable.
Q: What payment methods do you accept?
A: We accept all major credit cards and cash.
Q: What are your hours of operation?
A: Monday - Friday 8:30-5:00 / Saturday - 9:00-1:00
Q: How often should I water my palms?
A: In general, palms should be watered daily with 4 to 5 gallons of water for the first two weeks until the root system is established. Ensure that the soil is wet and not soggy. Too much water may cause permanent damage. Depending on the type of palm and time of year, watering may be decreased to twice a month or less once the tree is established. Make sure you water the trees from the bottom up. Watering from the top down can cause rotting. Soil that has good drainage is important to help prevent over saturation and adding sand to the soil mixture can help with drainage. Placing mulch around the base of the tree and not against the trunk can also help with retaining water.
For cold hardy palms, watering will vary depending on the time of year and the temperature. Here is a guideline for how much to water in any given season.
Winter (60 degrees of less) no need to water, except for the first 30 days after installation. (5 gallons or till mote is full)
Spring (75 degrees or less) water palm once a week. (5 gallons or till mote is full)
Beginning of summer (90 degrees or less) 2-3 times a week
Heat of summer (90 degrees and above) 4-5 times a week
Q: When do I apply fertilizer to my palm tree?
A: Newly planted palms should not be fertilized until they put out a new spear. For palms planted from the Georgia/Tennessee border down to Atlanta, apply fertilizer in three applications. In heavy clay soils use half the recommended amount of fertilizer, and do not apply granular fertilizers after August 1. Be sure to fertilize only during the growing season (between April 1 and August 1).
Q: It is a good idea to correctly support larger, newly planted palms?
A: Larger palms will require some form of bracing to maintain stability during the first six to eight months after installation. Three equidistantly-spaced braces are used to support the palm. If Atlanta Palms installs your palm tree, we handle the bracing.
Q: When should I prune my palm tree?
A: The only time you should prune your palm tree is when the fronds are discolored, broken or pointing to the ground at more than a 90 degree angle. Palms get most of their energy from their fronds, so it’s important to be careful not to remove too many.
Q: Why are drip irrigation systems preferable to sprinklers?
A: Both drip irrigation and sprinklers are good irrigation systems for your palm trees. Drip irrigation is designed to have deeper saturation into a specific area. Sprinklers (spray irrigation) will only saturate the top 3-5 inches per watering cycle whereas Palms root balls are 2-3 feet deep and require a deeper water saturation to develop new roots. Newly planted palms can suffer root loss with a lapse in deep water saturation especially during the hotter and drier summer months.
Ricky was amazing. He spent an hour with me to make sure I had the right plants and palms for the front yard area. Super knowledgeable. Prices were very reasonable. He came to my house to review the work to make sure I was satisfied. I'm getting so many compliments on my yard. I might win yard of the month! Let's hope!
Recently discovered this new Palm nursery, as I am a lover of Palm trees. Made a purchase and plan on going back to get a larger tree. Good mix of differently types of palms and good knowledge and advice from the owner. Would recommend to Palm lovers.
Rick spent a lot of time with me on the phone and in person. They were able to install the palms the next week. Rick sent a knowledgeable woman to install them with a helper. She was able to place them where they needed to go and gave me suggestions of what to add. She knows her palm trees.
Glad I found Atlanta Palms. They are very knowledgeable and extremely helpful. They have an excellent selection of Coontie palms and all the plants are robust and in great shape. If you need a palm or tropical plant this is the place to go.
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